Golf: Marc Leishman maintains early 2nd-round lead at Byron Nelson

Marc Leishman plays his tee shot on the 18th hole during the second round of the AT&T Byron Nelson at Trinity Forest Golf Club, on May 18, 2018.
Marc Leishman plays his tee shot on the 18th hole during the second round of the AT&T Byron Nelson at Trinity Forest Golf Club, on May 18, 2018.PHOTO: AFP

LOS ANGELES (AFP) - Australian Marc Leishman followed up his career-best 61 with a five-under 66 on Friday (May 18) to stay atop the leaderboard midway through the second round of the US PGA Tour's Byron Nelson tournament.

Leishman fired six birdies with one bogey on the par-71 Trinity Forest course south of downtown Dallas and was delighted to produce another solid round.

"When you shoot a really low one like I did yesterday it's hard to back it up," said Leishman, who had a 15-under total of 127 and a two-shot lead with the afternoon starters still on the course.

Leishman teed off on 10 and kick-started his round with a 56-foot birdie putt at the par-three 12th.

"My speed has been really great," said Leishman after enjoying another stellar day on the greens. "Last week at The Players I hit a lot of really good putts that lipped out, and this week they're going in.

"Some weeks you read them really well, and some weeks you're not sure if a 10-footer is slightly uphill or downhill, and that affects your speed and line and everything."

Leishman tapped in for birdie at 14 before a bogey from a greenside bunker at 15.

Coming in, he birdied four of five holes from the first through the fifth, and said he was enjoying the challenge of Trinity Forest, the undulating links-style course that has taken over as host for a tournament that was played for 35 years in suburban Irving.

"I enjoy this type of golf, it reminds me of back in Australia," Leishman said. "I like how the ball is running out in the fairways.

"I'm reading the greens well and hitting the ball well. Hopefully I can keep that up over the last two days," added the 34-year-old Aussie, who claimed the most recent of his three US tour titles at the 2017 BMW Championship.

American Brian Gay was in the clubhouse on 13-under 129 after a nine-under 62 that featured 10 birdies.